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Marlins Gone Wild: The Sequel?

Let's get one thing straight: this isn't December, 2011, again, when the Marilns went nuts at the Winter Meetings in Dallas, throwing cash around (Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, Heath Bell, etc.) as if they'd found a gold vein. Everyone knows how that turned out.

Well, here it is two years later and they're back at it, only this time at a much more moderate level. Two days after locking up catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia on a 3-year deal, and one day after securing infielder Rafael Furcal on a 1-year contract, they were working to reel in first baseman Garrett Jones on a 2-year deal worth $7.75 million. Jones was non-tendered by the Pirates earlier in the week after a slight dropoff  at the plate, where he hit totaled 15 homers (down from 27 the previous season) and hit .233 (down from .274 in 2012).

The moves signal a few things:

1) Logan Morrison is as good as gone. If that wasn't already apparent when they were toying with the idea of signing Mike Napoli, it certainly is now with the pending addition of Jones. The Marlins are expected to dangle Morrison at the Winter Meetings in Orlando next week.

2) The infield is receiving a makeover. Not only will Jones take over at first, but the Marlins intend to have Furcal -- a career shortstop -- play second. It's unclear at this point whether the Marlins will continue their search for a third baseman. They could turn it into a spring training competition involving Derek Dietrich, Ed Lucas and Donovan Solano. More than likely, though, they're still sifting through rosters looking for a third baseman.

3) They're spending again. OK, so it's not at the ridiculously insane levels of the 2011 Spending Spree. But they are opening their wallets, at least a little bit (frankly, more than I expected them to). Over the past three days, they've reached (or are about to reach) agreements on $31.75 million in contracts -- $21 million of that going to Saltalamacchia and another $3 million earmarked for Furcal. The Saltalamacchia deal is now official, by the way. Sure, that's barely more than a year's worth of salary for Robinson Cano. But, by the Marlins' usual standards, it's a step up. Their payroll now projects at somewhere around $46 million, which falls into the reported range of $40-50 million.

So tell us what you think? Do you like the moves the Marlins have made so far? Don't like them? The comment lines are open.

Comments

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Flav C.

Marlins definitely showing they don't want to use their pitching surplus on a trade.

Salty is an upgrade over anything the Marlins have in the catching position.

I like Furcal a lot, but I see him more as a trade-bait (if playing well) for mid-season. Anyway, I thought the same of Polanco and Pierre last season.

Jones brings more power and a very good glove at 1B. I also see him as an upgrade.

Morrison should bring some interesting trade piece if sent to the Red Sox or Rockies organizations.

Marlin Fan

Like Saltamaccia and Jones moves , not Furcal. I think LoMo has been given a chance and hasn't been able to stay healthy or produce CONSISTENTLY . he's still young , so maybe a change of scenery would do him well.

hayu

Flav...Not sure where you get your info, but from everything I've read, Jones is awful defensively.

Flav C.

hayu,

He is not good as an outfielder, defensively speaking. But he is a pretty good 1B, better range and much better at turning double-plays than Morrison.

Info can be found on fangraphs.

hayu

Flav...You're the stat man, so I concede your superior knowledge in that area. I just was sure that I read at the start of last season that he had really lousy numbers at first.
BTW, I guess my plan to land Yan Gomes for the Fish is out the window now. I'd rather have Gomes than Salty. You Brazilians know how to play baseball.

Keep Lomo!

You know that as soon as we trade Lomo, he will become a superstar. I see an MVP and many All-Star berths in his future.

bob

I really want to see them spend on Giancarlo though.

juanv

like the moves. keeping the prospects. just need some bullpen vets and a third baseman. wouldn't mind if they took a first baseman in the rule five draft to platoon with jones a young controllable prospect maybe with some pop. I like the fact that salty and jones are multiple years atleast will be good stop gaps while some prospects develop in the minors

Cnote00

Salty, I understand for his bat, although Mathis calls a better ERA than Salty. Furcal...not so much at 3mil per. But the head scratcher is G. Jones. He is 6 years older than Lomo, with almost identical 162 game averages, except for Wins over Replacement. But does he difference of 6 runs a year worth the difference in salaries. Why stunt the growth of Solano/Deitrich/Lucas/Lomo for the sake of spending money we don't have. Let the kids play!

Dionysus Thelxinoe

Salty is an upgrade. I see Furcal and Jones as low-risk, low-return moves in which the best-case is an improved offense translating into 10-15 more wins (75-77 total). That would make the return, imo, relatively commensurate with their investment. All in all, they look like moves in the right direction. And there's a potential side benefit to making these kind of moves (assuming they continue to improve over the next couple of seasons). By improving, the team increases their chances of convincing Stanton to stay when the time comes. Two caveats . . . one, let's see if they refrain from trading Salty after the one season, and two, if they're serious and they want to contend, at some point they will need to lose the no-trade policy, maybe starting with Stanton.

Flav C.

hayu my friend,

I'm using stats to judge Jones' defensive performance, but you know that some of those stats are misleading. They can hide bad performances and sometimes they can put Hech as a bottom-of-the-list shortstop (which we know is far from the truth) Hopefully Jones can bring some good at-bats, that's all I can hope for at this point.

I really wish baseball was more prominent in Brazil. So far, baseball is only played in areas where there is a large Japanese population. I read some teams (Tampa Rays, Houston) are investing in opening baseball centers in Brazil, so maybe 10 years from now...who knows?

For now, soccer continues to be king.

witz

If you're looking for a significant difference in runs scored and the W-L, Garrett Jones is doubtful-- just a short-term filler if Morrison goes. Furcal makes things happen and brings excitement, but can he still do enough to make a difference? If so, that's big. As for Saltalamacchia, no hesitation: thumbs up.

Stan M

Salty=good move. Furcal=understandable move. Jones=bring back Beinfest!!!
More expensive than LoMo. Much older than LoMO. Power won't translate into same production in Miami. Upside much lower than LoMO. LoMO will now be traded at nadir of his career. Only positive I see is slightly better defense. And the guy was non-tendered by Pittsburgh for crying out loud. You can all make fun of me in two years, but I'll say right here that LoMo will have better stats over that period if he plays regularly on another team. He's a slightly better version of Ruggiano, who could have been platooned with LoMo at 1B for better overall production. The only way this signing would make sense to me would be if we had a great 1B prospect about 2 years away; which we don't. We could have always moved Yelich to 1B if need be and freed OF space for another kid or Coghlan. The move stinks...in my opinion.

hayu

Flav...What's soccer?

Pablo

Is everyone expecting Salty to hit in Marlins Park (Mausoleum) next year surrounded by the Marlins lineup like he did in Fenway surrounded by that Red Sox lineup last year? Really?

pinocchiojoe@marlins.com

CancunLover77 is crying for his Lomo

octavio de armas

Marlins they will suck once again in 2014. They have the same ailment as the DOLPHINS. They both have idiots as owners !!!

obviously confused

I would like the Furcal signing if he was a bonafide 3rd baseman. Marlins already have a handful of guys who can play 2nd base, and, Furcal has been a shortstop so here the Marlins go again playing guys away from their natural positions. The Jones signing???? Lomo is about to start his First Season at his natural position while completely healthy. Remember when he was first brought up, they used him in Left Field where he banged himself up a couple of times. He is finally healthy and still young. Salty, I agree with Pablo, will not be surrounded by any equivalent of the 2013 Red Sox lineup, so, offensive numbers might be hard to repeat. Bottom line, I think the Marlins are once again signing guys that their previous teams didn't want. Surely these guys know what kind of owner loria is and are only coming over because they don't have much other choices.

Al-Kendall

Unless the trade brings in good 3B, I'll hate to swap out LOMO for Jones!

Al-Kendall

LOMO had better FP and RF than Jones!

mickey

I've read these posts and am amazed at how delusional these people are. Each of these three "fabulous" moves is for aging, mediocre to poor players. They are dictated by Loria getting the most well known names that he can sell to the delusional for a couple of months into the season until the truth of how bad they are will be undeniable. They are at best at the bottom of the free agent pool gotten for chump change.

Juan Yanes

Very well for Marlins open their saving account and buy 1st base Jones, now they have a decent lineup batting order next step could be get a decent lefty reliever to avoid loss more than twenty games in the late innings because Dunn is not a safe lefty reliever.

Pablo

The fish stinks from the head. Loria needs to sell the team to an owner with deep pockets that will hire good front office people and that will let them do their jobs.

the Truth

Reality is that that Loria and the new front office believe that Lomo will never be any better than his previous numbers and Lomos apologist and protector Beinfest is history,therefore Lomo will be history too.

Lou

Stan, I won't make fun of you.What you wrote was spot on. Tell me what you think of my Stanton to the Tigers transaction? Mike to the Tigers for the two outstanding pitchers just acquired from the Nats--they are both power left handers, one already pitched great for the Nats this year in relief and other guy is targeted to be in Tiger rotation next year--which means he would be in the Marlins rotation this year. Would also give the Marlins the gem of the system--and projected starter at 3rd for Detroit this year--Nick Castellanos. Would even throw in Andy Dirks in left field. First 3 guys have not even had the clock started as far as clun control and Dirks is a couple of yeas away.The Marlins would have their outfield--Ozuns, Yelich and Marishnak--their third basdeman, a left handed power starter ad a lights out lefty in the bullpen. How about it?? Would give Porcello but Marlins wouldn't want him because of arbitration. The Tigers also have outstanding second basemen almost ready.

Stan M

Al-Kendall, you said it all in one sentence.

employee

Loria has has enough of Lomo's immature unprofessional twitter act, and wants him gone. Period.

juanv

chad qualls signed a two year deal with Houston.

Delray

should have traded Stanton to Pittsburgh last season for the reported offer of Gerrit Cole the rhp, Marte the CF, and another prospect or two. Marte would give the Fish a leadoff hitter with speed, the right guy for Marlins park. Cole on top the rotation with Fernandez would be great plus and would give the Marlins the chance to trade valuable young pitching for a decent first and third baseman. Stanton is vastly overrated IMO. I'd give Ozuna or Ruggiano the right field job.

Delray

Lou, you are making a huge leap in faith to think Marisnek will ever hit big league pitching ... he was utterly helpless at the plate last year. I'd make the trade with Detroit anyway, but would rather deal with Pittsburgh.

petey

Barry Jackson quotes the Marlins saying Lomo has an "old body" for a 26yr old..that oughta help his value in a trade...

Stan M

Lou, I would not be against trading Stanton. However, I would want ML ready hitters with a high upside. If there is anything we don't need, it's more young pitchers. So I would not favor your trade above. Sorry.
However, I do agree with that post above wherein a trade with Pittsburgh would have been a steal; and yes, it included a pitcher, but what a pitcher!!! Cole might be even better than Fernandez!

Stan M

Many of you fellow posters want LoMo gone. Perhaps you could explain to this old man how 10 teams are reportedly interested in acquiring him but some 32 YO non-tendered first baseman will be an improvement for the Marlins. Please remember that the team looses money in this transfer; money that might have brought at least a LH reliever. This whole idea is absurd and must have more to do with LoMo's tweets and criticism of the capacious ball field than his playing ability. It's not a bad move; it's a horrible move. You can all get on me next year.
And I, in my vanity, would like to point out that I was a lone voice in saying that the Toronto trade last year was a good one.

Lou

Stan, I believe most think Morrison CAN play but a lot wonder if he ever will play and many have grown tired of his act. Personally, I would keep him and try to get in his head in a positive way.

richie

I think some who post here are too concerned with off the field activities of LoMo. Namely his use of Twitter. Why is nobody posting about all the work he does with Kids who have cancer, and other things he does in the community? From what I can see of his play on the field, he plays hard, trains hard, and is a good teammate. He was named as the Team Winner of the Roberto Clemente Award. He is the teams PR guy. Loria may not like that LoMo has a mind of his own, but one David Samson and one ass kisser GM is more than enough. Regarding Garrett Jones, I just saw at SI.com he signed a 2-year $7-$8 million contract with the Marlins. He gets about $2.5 the first year and $5 million the second year. Anybody want to guess where he will be playing during the second year??

Lou

Richie, I give him credit for all the fine things he does off the field and I spend more than 90% of my time with young people because I prefer them to oldsters like myself, however, I still believe LoMo is a silly man and it has nothing to do with twitter or freedom of expression. I admit to the great possibility of being wrong. If I'm not wrong, he will never attain those things on field of which he is capable. I don't think there was any viable excuse for his numbers last year. If not for Cabrera at 1B, I would have no trouble with him playing for the Tigers with that surrounding cast of personalities.

the shadow

Since signing Jones to replace Lomo before he is even traded makes no sense on the surface, the real question is what do the Marlins know about Lomo that is not public knowledge? Why did they sign a highly questionable replacement before even trading him? Very unusual,to say the least.What's the real reasons???

Lou

Production????????

Flav C.

The shadow,

What the Marlins know about LoMo is no secret: Two patellar tendon surgeries in the same knee = limited playing time.

Just like every other player who went through a first patellar tendon surgery, his recovery should have gone smoothly and he would be as good as new. However, the fact that he rushed his recovery and aggravated his condition in such a way that he needed a second and more incisive procedure, it tells a lot of how his knee will not hold up after a while. As I mentioned a long time ago: no professional athlete (it doesn't matter the sport)has fully recovered after 2 surgeries on the same knee.

They better trade him now while there are a few teams interested in him instead waiting till mid-season, when these same teams will realize he is only a part-time position player.

During the last 18 months Morrison has been very well managed by his agent as far as his public comments and tweets: he refrained from being controversial and even when Stanton had his outburst after the big trade with Toronto, Morrison was politically correct and stayed away from controversy, in a smart attempt to let his production and performance on the field speak for him.

But unfortunately for him, his production was way below what was expected of him.


Juan Yanes

Now with the add of 1st base Jones Marlins could trade Morrison for a decent lefty reliever or a 3rd base, I think now MaRLINS is making a competitive team to fight for run to post season seies; but the only incognito is the unexperience manager who can cause more than 30 losses

the Truth

@the shadow...the Marlins were shocked at the level of interest shown in Morrison at the meetings last month. They figure they better strike while the iron is hot and deal Lomo before he gets hurt again or starts the season hot then goes into his usual funk and ends up showing he is what his career numbers say, and he's run out of excuses for his mediocre performance. The Marlins know they will get more for him now than later,as they have no faith in him ever producing up to previous expections.

former neighbor

Although he wont admit it publicly ,Lomo cant wait to get the hell away from the Marlins. The reasons are way too numerous to list here. Use your imaginations Marlins fans. Good chance you all will be right.

Dionysus Thelxinoe

Good take Flav. Other than that, seriously, who cares? A corner position player with a questionable health history who really has yet to accomplish anything? Please.

Lou

They continue to mention LoMo everywhere. I think he belongs on a veteran team whose cast of characters would keep him centered and motivated.

juanv

mlb trade is reporting he has been traded already

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